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Reviews Categories | Ham radio kits | Ten-Tec Universal BFO Kit #1050 Help

Reviews Summary for Ten-Tec Universal BFO Kit #1050
Ten-Tec Universal BFO Kit #1050 Reviews: 15 Average rating: 3.3/5 MSRP: $$10
Description: 455 kHz BFO kit
Product is in production.
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KA4DQJ Rating: 3/5 Dec 14, 2014 22:18 Send this review to a friend
It's Fair  Time owned: more than 12 months
The kit goes together in a half-hour like any BFO, but seems to have more parts than necessary for such a device. I found that I was always opening up the case I built it in to re-adjust the can settings; the pot just didn't have the range when you changed bands or radios. Inexplicably, it wouldn't work with some 455khz IF radios. The injection level on mine seemed to be a bit weak too.

I built another even cheaper BFO with fewer parts and no adjustments which is just as stable and works fine on all radios I've tried. I've ended up using this one exclusively when I need a BFO and have retired the #1050.
K1EAR Rating: 4/5 May 15, 2014 11:44 Send this review to a friend
Demise unfortunate..  Time owned: more than 12 months
Sad to hear they are not making this any longer. Had a good time using mine with 1936-era SW radios (Arvin and Fairbanks-Morse)and working 80, 40 and 30 meter CW with same. Steady hand needed for SSB, but usable. Mounted mine in a modem box and moved around on top of receiver, depending on how much injection was needed...
IK3SSG Rating: 3/5 Apr 19, 2014 10:04 Send this review to a friend
info pls  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
HI everyone!
the kit is no longer available in TENtec...
someone has the schematic diagram and documentation
to make it ?
thanks a lot

Graziano IK3SSG
WX9DX Rating: 5/5 Mar 7, 2014 04:19 Send this review to a friend
Great Kit! Lots of uses  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have used these kits for many projects over the years. They are amazing when wanting to make a CB or Short-wave AM only radio hear sideband or CW. This kit also can be used for other projects as the heart of a nice VFO by changing the coil. There have been many things I've done over the years with this BFO Kit. Hope Ten Tec keeps making it. 73, Jimmy, ARRL TC, WX9DX
K9QHO Rating: 4/5 Sep 6, 2013 06:39 Send this review to a friend
Nice little kit.  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
This kit draws about 12 mA @9.6 Volts. Used this kit to upgrade a old Hallicrafters S-120 for a fun project. Utilized the S-120's power supply (97V) with a 2 resistor divider and a zener to power this PCB. The fine tune trim pot(R6)was not used. Instead, wired to a 10K pot on the front panel at the original BFO control. The Standby/Receive switch was changed to BFO on/off. Had trouble with output at collector. Instead, I picked up signal at emitter (much stronger). I injected the signal using a wire coupled parallel to the antenna input wire (inside chassis) using a couple of cable ties(1.5 inches). The tank coil is a Mouser 421F201 (Xicon 421F201RC). This circuit can be simulated easily. Strong SSB signals will sometimes not get enough injection (this probably because of my coupling technique). Works wonderful on weaker SSB signals and CW. Very stable, can copy CW easily on 40 meters.
K2OWK Rating: 2/5 Aug 4, 2013 21:42 Send this review to a friend
Works about the same in the case  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
I put this little BFO in a case. While it is easier to use and transport. It still has the same problems. Very complex wave form. Very sharp tuning. It still is a good fun kit for just $13.00, but can not be considered for a good method to tune sideband.
K2OWK Rating: 2/5 Jul 5, 2013 22:10 Send this review to a friend
Quick build, works?   Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Nice kit. Well made. Very easy to assemble. Mine came missing a 1N2001 diode. I was lucky I had a 1N2002 in my junk box and was able to complete the assembly. Directions are excellent. The output is a complex wave according to my scope that my counter can not recognize, but it must be 455 KHZ as it does zero beat my old Zenith Trans-oceanic model 3000. Like someone said the tuning is very sharp and the can has to be adjusted each time the frequency is changed by a few KHZ (very annoying). The price has gone up by $3.00, but it is still worth it as a do it your self fun project. I will repost this review when I put the BFO in a metal case. I will also try to do something about the narrow tuning range and the output wave.
NG9D Rating: 4/5 Jan 8, 2011 04:45 Send this review to a friend
Just for Fun  Time owned: more than 12 months
It won't turn your shortwave radio into a communications grade receiver but it will allow you to hear some CW and SSB on radios lacking a BFO. To listen to a few on-air examples see
Enclosing it in a case adds stability. I had fun assembling it and using it with various 455kHz I.F. radios. 73 de NG9D
W8RMV Rating: 2/5 Dec 4, 2010 13:01 Send this review to a friend
So So  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
I have a HQ100 & wanted to add a BFO to it like the HQ100A. So I bought the TenTec hoping I could get it to work with the HQ100. I did not have good success. It was still easier & more effective using the Q multiplier & BFO on the 100. So I tried it on a few SS SW radios I have, and had mixed results. It was cheap & worth a try even tho I knew mixing SS with Tube stuff, isn't always effective. The signal coming out of the TenTec BFO does not look like a sine wave at all, but my counter tells me it is 455kHz.
KG6QNK Rating: 3/5 Sep 16, 2010 13:46 Send this review to a friend
Fun to build; actual use not that great  Time owned: more than 12 months
Easy to build Fun Kit; does what it is designed to do; but not that great. Output is very high and varies from Band to Band. Would need to tame and regulate (hope you have good AGC) before putting this inside receiver enclosure. My unit would not track very far before I would need to readjust variable inductor... Ten-Tec attributes this to the Receiver; could very well be. As a Fun stand alone kit it's allright; however, I would not buy another. I just obtained an old Sony 8 Transistor pocket AM only Radio and am using it as a BFO to beat a Note over to my ShortWave Radio. Still somewhat mickey mouse; however I do prefer it overall to this kit in general performance. CW sounds excellent. Main tuning capacitor is air variable, and no matter the band can find a beat note. SSB is ok; don't listen to it too much . Just get yourself an old AM Radio with variable tuning and use for BFO. Save your money for good RCVR with SSB/CW capability.
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